Raja Fashions Review (Custom Shirts)

I read about these guys in the newspaper while on an airplane and looked them up on their website. The idea here is that they go on "tours" and deliver made-to-measure clothing. So if you are looking for custom-made shirts, suits or pants they can do it. You can also have your initials sewn on the shirts which is a cool touch. The clothes are made in Hong Kong (to save on costs I assume) and then they ship them to you.

A Shirt That I Bought From Raja Fashions




Choosing Fabrics

I decided to go for some custom-made shirts to start with and was even looking for a custom suit. So I went to their hotel room during one of their Montreal tour dates where I chose a few fabrics for my shirts. The downside is that you have to kind of guess how the fabric would look on you, since all you have at that point is a small sample of the fabric.

Choosing Shirt Style

Since it is custom shirts, you can choose whether you want a shirt pocket, buttons on your collar and the type of cuffs you want...All things that I never thought about in my entire life. Just be ready to decide what you want.

Pricing

They asked if it was my first visit with them, and of course I answered honestly (yes it was my first time). When I asked them about pricing it was somewhat deflected with a "Depends on the material you choose". Personally, I believe being more open about pricing could go a long way when making a first impression to new clients...That's just me.

In any case, after the measurements and choosing the fabrics (which all took an hour at least) the topic of pricing came up again. The cost of the shirts depended on the fabric you chose (I was quoted $80 or $120 per shirt). You also had to order a minimum of three shirts. None of which was mentioned to me at the start of this process.

But, let's just get down to dollar figures: The offer was $350 for four shirts including shipping (he claimed the shirts alone normally retailed for $400 in total). He also claimed the price included $75 in shipping costs (Note: they ship twice, once as a single "fitting" shirt to see if it fits properly, and then the rest afterwards. That is still a high cost for shipping if you ask me, even if it is with UPS).

I thought the price was a little on the high side and asked for a better deal. He said he couldn't budge on the price and then just walked away. The higher than expected cost and strange service turned me off from buying the suit I had planned to buy. I understand that he's a busy guy, but even after sitting there for over an hour, I was ready to walk out without placing an order for the shirts.

Then he comes back and we haggle over shipping and price a bit more, which is about 15% off his initial offer price. To keep the price down, he wanted to ship it all in one shot. But in the end I ordered four shirts and got him to ship me a fitting shirt to make sure it fits well. He's used to negotiating and he anchored himself well.

Shipping

They ship the shirts via UPS. The fitting shirt was a little long (but otherwise was a good fit) and I requested a change. I returned the shirt to him in person (which is the next time they are in town) and was reassured that it would be taken care of. Just like the first fitting shirt, the other three shirts were shipped to me to my nearest UPS outlet a few weeks later. Great.

True to his word, the final remaining shirt (with the requested modification) was shipped to me in another four weeks later. However, I had to pick this one up at the UPS distribution center in the middle of nowhere out in Lachine (and not my local UPS outlet like the previous two deliveries).

Good Marketing, Good Shirts, Value Can Be Better

In hindsight, the price I paid is still somewhat expensive; even for quality custom made shirts. Raja Fashions seems to have superior marketing, advertising and online presence at this point, so I applaud them for that. Sometimes you need to spend money to make money.

Of course, it's no surprise that they are not the only game in town (there are similar custom clothing options that focus on value more, and if I try them I'll post about them too.

In the end, Raja Fashions did make good quality shirts for me (the fabric is much sturdier than other store-bought shirts I've owned before) so I am happy with them despite the running around I had to do.

Your turn now, I'm sure someone out there has gotten a better deal than I did from Raja Fashions? Let us know in the comments to help everyone out :)

Comments

I cannot recommend Raja Fashions in any capacity. My experience was an extreme disappointment and I have never seen sales people who were more indifferent, uncaring and incompetent. I wish I had walked out of my fitting before putting down my credit card. Their two salesmen showed absolutely no interest in assisting me in picking out styles or fabric and were only interested in repeatedly trying to upsell me to buy some shirts. They made no attempt to introduce themselves or learn about my work and lifestyle to better serve me. They attempted (unsuccessfully) to show me the various suit styles using an iPad they couldn't operate for the life of them. Rather than suggesting fabrics, they dropped several fabric books on a table and left the room. Frankly, I have had better service from pimply teenage sales clerks working on commission.
After numerous emails with their customer service, the only restitution they were prepared to offer was a discount on my future purchases. As if.
There are a lot of international bespoke tailors out there. I highly recommend that you check them out before you even consider attending a Raja Fashions tour.
That's true, it very much feels like a self-serve shopping experience.
Unknown said…
Try Mr. Maxwell Clothiers. They also tour Canada. I bought a suit from them years ago and it continued to fit be as i gained weight and lost it. The suit is way out of style, otherwise i would still be wearing it. Shirts were not great and kept shrinking.
Good tip, they could be an alternative as well.
I just received my bespoke suits from the raja fashion travelling tailors and must say that I was quite impressed.
The fabric range and variety was good and I was able to let them know what i was looking to spend and they advised me accordingly.

I met the sales guys in the hotel room and it was a straight forward process. I don't know what people(the above comments) expect the sales guys to do for you apart from show you the fabric options of which you would select and get measured. At the end of the day you are getting a way cheaper price for a bespoke suit than getting something off-the-rack from a known brand.

I have one shoulder thats slightly lower than the other(sports injury), and they spotted it immediately and were able to adjust the should pad in that area to make my body look more symmetrical. I would recommend them, and would suggest people do some research on the style of the suit they want before visiting them, as it makes it a much easier process re: decision making.

I'll probably look in to making shirts next time.

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